Grants & External Funding

In 2013, the CRG maintained its very successful track record in attracting competitive funding from highly prestigious funding agencies (€11.4 million¹), in spite of the significant decrease in national funding and the gap between FP7 and H2020 at the European level. Currently, financing from the European Commission (€5.2 million, not including projects in negotiation, see Table 2) represents the largest share of competitive funding, putting the CRG in 11th position in the Spanish ranking list of EU funds, and the first by size after large organisations and companies. As an indicator of excellence, the CRG is the leading Spanish institute in ERC grants in life sciences, currently with 13 grants (7 Starting, 3 Advanced, 1 Consolidator, 1 Synergy and 1 Proof of Concept – 2 of them under negotiation).

Table 1. Total external funding

2013 2012
EXTERNAL FUNDING €000 % €000 %
Competitive grants 11.483,69 89,6% 15.451,46 92,3%
          European Commission (FP7) 5.177,09 40,4% 9.436,12 56,3%
          National 5.845,15 45,6% 4.066,40 24,3%
          International 461,46 3,6% 1.948,94 11,6%
   Other external funding 1.331,72 10,4% 1.294,45 7,7%
          National 1.308,28 10,2% 1.202,29 7,2%
          International 23,44 0,2% 92,16 0,6%
TOTAL 12.815,41 100,0% 16.745,91 100,0%

Table 2: Competitive grants in negotiations 2013

TOTAL 15.362,49

CRG researchers have attracted one of the 13 ERC Synergy grants (chosen from the 450 proposals submitted) for the most exceptional multidisciplinary research projects in Europe to study the 3D structure of the genome and its role in gene expression (4DGenome). The groups involved in the project are those led by M. Beato (CRG), G. Filion (CRG), T. Graf (CRG and ICREA research professor) and M. Marti-Renom (CNAG-CRG and ICREA research professor). The 5-year project has been awarded 12.2 million euros. Additional funding from the European Commission includes one ERC Starting grant (F.Kondrashov), one ERC Consolidator grant (B.Lehner) and a COFUND project to continue the Postdoctoral Fellowship Programme to recruit twelve postdocs over two calls in 2014 and 2015. La Marató de TV3 fundraising telethon has, in 2013, funded two CRG research projects (L. Di Croce and F. Gebauer) in the area of cancer research. This is big success given that only 42 research projects out of 318 were selected.

In addition to attracting competitive grants for excellent basic research and fellowships, the CRG has also succeeded in obtaining additional private funds for strategic activities amounting to €1.2 million, which include funding by “la Caixa” for the project “The European Genome-Phenome Archive (EGA) and the development of genome analysis software for medical purposes”, and from the Fundación Ramón Areces for a postdoctoral position for a 3-year project, as detailed in Table 1 under “Other External funding”.

[1] The new projects outlined in the text are reported in the official figures for external funding in 2013, with the exception of  the ERC Synergy, ERC Consolidator and La Marató projects, which were in negotiation/pending final award notification at the close of the year. They are included in the Table 2 “Competitive grants in negotiations 2013” and will be reported in the official figures for external funding for 2014. Similarly, the Severo Ochoa Grant that was awarded in 2012 with an official start date in 2013, was in negotiation at the close of the year 2012, and is, therefore, now reported in the official figures for 2013.